Germany’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA), has announced plans to allow competitors of incumbent Deutsche Telekom (DT) to more easily develop and supply broadband connections in ‘white spots’, rural areas that have little or no coverage. Under this decision, DT must grant its competitors access to the subscriber line and master street cabinets, which must be erected by DT at locations that have not, or only inadequately, been provided with broadband access. Access to the subscriber line at a master street cabinet reduces the length of the lines between the provider’s active equipment and the customer’s premises, enabling internet supply with high bandwidths.
President of the FNA, Matthias Kurth, said: ‘With today’s decision, the FNA has demonstrated its readiness to actively tackle the problem of ‘white spots’ and put the necessary regulatory conditions in place to ensure that fast internet access is available to everyone, even in rural areas in the future. Today’s decision thus already takes into account the broadband strategy only recently adopted by the Federal Government. I now call on competitors to make good use of the new access possibility to push the rollout of broadband lines in rural areas.’
The FNA will determine the fees to be paid by competitors of DT for this new network access method in a separate approval procedure, soon to follow.